This day in history: Nixon ends gold/dollar ties
Quote of the Day
"Freedom has cost too much blood and agony to be relinquished at the cheap price of rhetoric."
America's over-spending problem
Article has charts AND graphs
After receiving many comments on my recent post laying some of the blame for our deficits on President George W. Bush, but much more of the blame on President Barack Obama, I decide to recheck how I that this impression.
If you believe that "a picture is worth a thousand words," then these pictures will relieve the need for much narrative. It's easy to be in denial when your information is based on opinions or incorrect data. It is much harder when faced with graphic evidence. Therefore, this post is for all of those who disagree about who caused the spending problem in recent years in the USA, and for all those who have been arguing to no avail to prove that point.
Click here to read the full article at Yahoo News
Struggling Republican Pawlenty exits White House race
Good move on his part, really
Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty became the first major casualty in the marathon U.S. presidential campaign on Sunday while fellow Republicans Michelle Bachmann and Rick Perry built momentum in the race.
Pawlenty, once seen as a strong contender for the Republican nomination to face Democratic President Barack Obama in the November 2012 election, dropped out a day after a disappointing showing in Iowa's straw poll, a key early test of strength among his party's candidates.
August 15, 1971: A date which has lived in infamy
Nixon forces dollar and gold to cut ties
In their impossibly good book Money, Markets, and Sovereignty (2009), Benn Steil and Manuel Hinds make the point that over the last four thousand years, the only period in which humanity has not consistently based its currency in metal, specifically gold, is the last forty. That's right. Ever since President Richard M. Nixon announced forty years ago today, on August 15, 1971, that the U.S. would no longer officially trade dollars for gold, we have been enjoying a new era of human history.
Enjoying not being the mot juste. Out of the gate, we got the 1970s, what with their stagflation, a real stock market performance worse than that of the 1930s, and a crisis of confidence such had never bedeviled the American people before. There were go-go years in the 1980s and 1990s, to be sure, when stocks increased 15-fold and the tech revolution changed the world. But now we have our woebegotten 2000s, where stocks lose ground against the price level year after year, 9% unemployment is the new normal, and explosive government spending and Federal Reserve blowouts can't create a job.
Why the stock market tanked
Forbes breaks it down
The stock market's 1000-point setback, echoed the world over, has been a shock and a puzzle. Following a tripartite debt-control agreement in Washington, how could the economic situation be worse than before? I begin with a suspicion that the much prayed-for "deal" was a pretense. On Aug. 1, all three negotiating groups concluded that their time had finally run out. Though they had gotten nowhere, they declared a victory simply by announcing agreement.
The gridlock that has exercised the media over the past months is now set to continue inside the twelve-member select committee authorized by the "deal." Between them, these twelve won't have any more teeth than the debt limit itself did. Even if, miraculously, they were to come out with the right stuff, neither house of Congress, and neither political party, is obligated to ratify it. Now the debt limit has been raised, but the warring sides are back in the same positions they had staked out all along.
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